By David Brand
The New York City Department of Environmental Protection broke ground Wednesday on a large-scale, $84 million water infrastructure project to improve streets and diminish the risk of flooding in Brookville.
The project is one part of a $1.9 billion initiative to upgrade the sewage system in Southeast Queens, which was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy and remains vulnerable to flooding. The overall initiative includes 45 individual projects.
“Mayor de Blasio committed $1.9 billion to combat flooding in southeast Queens and with shovels in the ground today in Brookville, we are one step closer to a comprehensive drainage system for the entire area,” said DEP Commissioner Vincent Sapienza at the ground-breaking ceremony.
Work crews will install more than two miles of water mains within a 21-block swath of the neighborhood, near Idlewild Park. Existing water mains in the area predate World War II. The city will also replace 25 fire hydrants and add 11 more.
Councilmember Donovan Richards represents Brookville and welcomed the water system upgrades.
“With every new project completed in Southeast Queens, we are getting closer to the days where flooding is a concern of the past,” Richards said. “The community of Brookville has suffered through flooded streets, lawns and basements following nearly every rain storm, which is why the completion of this project is so important to the residents around Idlewild Park.”